I want to answer the question What to eat after workout? with another question
Should I eat after workout and how long after workout?
...because this is the real point.
When you work out your body requires lots of energies, so it's clear that you have to provide some good calories before you hit the gym (like 1 to 2 hours before). But if you eat after workout you probably don't maximize fat burn in your body.
When you finish your weight lifting session your body keeps using energy (post workout fat burning principle), and what is the first source of energy that your body burns?
Fat, your body tries to burn fat to recover from the workout you just finished.
Fat is stored in your body so it can be used in case of necessity.
If you eat after workout there is no need to burn fat
Simple as that. But now you are going to ask me
- How do I provide the nutrients to build muscle after workout?
- Should I not eat after workout at all?
What to Eat After Workout?
Of course you need to provide some energy to your body, some nutrients to help it recover from the stress of a workout, and rebuild your muscle bigger and stronger.
What you need to eat after workout is protein. Lean protein.
I always drink a protein shake with water (to be processed and digested faster so that my body can use use the proteins immediately) immediately after workout. If you can't do it immediately after, try to eat proteins at least within 1 hour.
It's been proven that eating protein after half hour is better than waiting 1 full hour.
If you eat carbs after workout your body will use them for energy instead of burning fat. Carbs are the fuel for our body and are burned before it burns fat.
How Long Should I Wait Before I Eat After Workout?
Don't have a meal until about 2 hours after workout. If it is true that your body burns fat after exercising it is also true that this doesn't last forever.
Otherwise you could just go to the gym and then wait until you have 5% fat in your body: just not possible.
Wait a couple of hours before you have a good meal, and then you can fill up with new energy.
When you work out you are telling your body to preserve the muscle because you need it to lift weights, and your body understands that and will use fat as primary source of energy if you don't feed it with carbs.
You should take advantage of this body behavior if you want to maximize your fat loss preserving the muscle. If you eat after workout and have big meals and provide calories in form of carbs your body doesn't burn all the fat that it could.
Yes you will put weight on, but your muscle will be covered and I don't think that's what you really want...is it?
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